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Restaurant on Border Street in East Boston wins approval for permanent patio - but without music

Proposed patio

Rendeirng of proposed seasonal patio

A temporary outdoor patio during the pandemic has worked so well for Mi Pueblito, 333 Border St., it wants to make the patio permanent.

The Zoning Board of Appeal today approved the Mexican and Guatemalan restaurant's plans for a permanent 32-seat patio structure on what is now its parking lot.

But after hearing about complaints from neighbors about noise from music the restaurant now plays on its temporary patio, the board set two conditions on its approval: That service end at 9 p.m. and that the restaurant not play any music.

Six parking spaces will remain, which will be limited to restaurant employees.


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Why does the city let the NIMBYs win like this? A bit of music in the air during reasonable hours should come with the territory living in an urban environment. People who want more control can move to the burbs.

Voting closed 30

If not, what do you care?

If the restaurant was playing music loudly enough in the past to annoy people who actually live in an adjacent unit, they have right to ask the board for the no music stipulation. Chances are the residents pre-date the patio unless they just moved in.

Part of living in a city is compromising. The restaurant still gets the patio which is the valuable part to them.

Voting closed 21

No feedback from newer residents?

If the restaurant was playing music loudly enough in the past to annoy people

I mean sure but some people have different levels of what they consider "annoying" or impactful enough to oppose something or ask for changes. Someone could easily exaggerate the noise level impact, right?

Voting closed 11

And the restaurant owner could equally be exaggerating if they claim they always kept the volume low and never had any complaints.

There are people on UHub who think that the permitting boards should be a rubber stamp and always approve whatever the business wants. Screw any local who dares voice a concern as they must be a clueless old White NIMBY who should move to the suburbs.

The point of the permit boards is to listen to locals AND consider the business needs and try to come up with a permit that addresses the interests of everyone as much as possible.

In this specific case, there's about 20 residential patios overlooking the restaurant. It's not a stretch to think people living in these units might want to sit outside without having to listen to the restaurant's mix between 11am - 9pm every day of the week.

I'll add this: I don't live nearby and have never been to the restaurant so I won't complain about permit or lack thereof. But I do disagree with the notion the permit board must inherently wrong to impose any stipulations or that locals should STFU because they live in a city.

Voting closed 15

In some cases, seems that even in the face of overwhelming support, a vocal view can derail plans and cause a business to reverse course.


From the questions and comments everything seemed REALLY positive at the ACA meeting. One questioner asked a lot of negative questions ("will the outdoor seating face the residence next door?" "how loud is 'background music' because the building isn't sound proofed?" "wine and beer or full alcohol license...because I'm not happy if it's full alcohol license..." "I don't know if I like the 2 AM closing time for the weekends"). But she was the only one. Everyone in the chat messages was also positive as well.

So, the only thing I can guess is it was at the abutters' meeting that they mentioned they'd be doing next where everything went to shit?

I think true NIMBYs deserve the scorn that is thrown their way when they use bad faith arguments to oppose any and all change. And please spare me about the "rubber stamping" bit, you know more often than not these projects are either denied or asked to re-design/resubmit based on the boards decisions.

We do live in a city, it is noisy. Do I get to use noise concerns to push back against the size of the Allston Pike re-design?

Voting closed 11

They do all that they can to limit the cultural vibrancy of Boston.

Voting closed 5

I mean I live nearby and the volume is fine. It was one cranky neighbor who plainly didn't realize they were moving to a pseudo industrial street next to a restaurant.

Voting closed 11

But at the two community meetings I attended where this project came up, it was just one guy complaining about the music, and basically the restaurant existing at all, because that building wasn’t zoned for a restaurant. This isn’t to say he doesn’t support local businesses becoming successful, but he had to ask, “if they already have a line out the door of people waiting for tables, why do they need to expand? Aren’t they doing well enough already?” FWIW, the vast majority of Eagle Hill residents supported the patio extension and thought long waits for a table was an argument in favor of adding more tables. Why exactly the fine residents of east boston can’t be trusted to enjoy a couple of pupusas outdoors at 9:30pm is a question for the board.

Voting closed 7

have done very well during the pandemic. Please stop with the sob stories to squeeze more bennies from the City.

Voting closed 5

Lemme guess; you think it’s fine for drivers to get hand outs but no one else. This isnt a city parking lot either.

Voting closed 8

Mariachi? Something else?

Voting closed 5

The prospect of Latino people possibly listening to Latin music outdoors is grating to older racists.

The prospect of Latinos being outdoors after 930 eating pupusas is grating to racists.

This is why tourists and locals alike find the cultural diversity of Boston to be limited in respect ot its residential diversity. People are way too comfortable literally muting people of color and physically hiding them. In Boston.

People will say oh its a reasonable concern from neighbors. Realy that type of attitude is the same thing that racists said during the bussing crisis. Constantly constraining entertainment and culture visbility when its minorities is racism. Even if it is just no music. You're hurting the atmosphere. Its what keeps us a training-wheels city.

Voting closed 5